The Conundrum of Prematurity: “But They’re Getting So Big!”

There is nothing more joyous or more adorable than a doughy, pudgy little chunkster of a baby, right? You know, the one with the cute Budda belly, thigh rolls for days and cheeks so pinch-and-kissable…ah, the life. And then with twins there are two of them – #omg #cutenessoverload #pudgefordays. After all a baby that is fat, smiling and happy must be healthy, right?

This concept of “baby weight” and “fat babies = healthy babies” dawned on me back in the early days of the NICU when family would ask, “How much do they need to weigh before coming home?” It literally was a question that was asked more than two dozen times by family, friends and those around us that were not medical personnel. Why was everyone so damn concerned about how much the kids weighed and not with whether or not they could exist without breathing support? Or feed via a bottle? Or coordinate their breathing while taking a bottle and not going into bradycardia (brady, for short)?

As we traversed the NICU we learned that there were many signs of health and many things to monitor when learning to manage prematurely born infants. There is also the topic of “corrected age,” which looks at developmental milestones as a function of chronological age vs. gestational age (more on that later). In fact, weight was rarely discussed except to ensure that any body weight lost post-birth was promptly regained; weight was not even a criterion for hospital release! What was? A NICU nurse referred to the short list as “START.”

1) Self-regulating body temperature and heart rhythms

2) Taking all milk by mouth

3) Ability to breathe without any support (although some babes are released on oxygen)

4) Regular excretion (pooping/peeing)

5) The car seat test

While this list is by no means exhaustive it is a good list of basic tasks that all newborns must accomplished prior to being released.

Thankfully our babies were released at one month of age (chronological age) and we were cleared to go home. Having been born at 33 weeks (gestational age) they were doing pretty good. But before this happened our occupational therapist (OT) had a long sit-down with us. It was likely the most life-changing conversation. Simply stated she said, “You don’t have normal babies. You have babies that were born 2 months early and their chronological age must be “corrected” with respect to their gestational age.” What does this mean? Since usual or normal full term is 40 weeks here is how 33 weekers is “corrected.”

Comparison of Gestational, Chronological and Corrected Ages for Children Born 7 Weeks Premature

Gestational Age Chronological Age Corrected Age
33 weeks 0 weeks -7 weeks
34 weeks 1 week -6 weeks
35 weeks 2 weeks -5 weeks
36 weeks 3 weeks -4 weeks
37 weeks 4 weeks -3 weeks
38 weeks 5 weeks -2 weeks
39 weeks 6 weeks -1 weeks
40 weeks 7 weeks 0 weeks
—– 8 weeks 1 week
—– 9 weeks 2 weeks
—– 10 weeks 3 weeks
—– 11 weeks 4 weeks
—– 12 weeks 5 weeks

So what does this mean? Why do we correct age? Why is this important? How long do we need to correct age for? What impact will this have on the kids? The answer? Every child is different. Let’s break this down in a simple, concise way.

What does ‘corrected’ age mean and why do we correct for age?

The term “corrected age” is nothing more than a way to observe a baby based on their “age” had they been born full term. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has developed a guide (available by clicking here) that shows the average age most kids develop certain skills. Things like the ability to self-soothe, make direct eye contact, sit up, babble and a host of other social, cognitive and motor skills. But when a baby is born prematurely it has an effect on this timeline. In other words: some milestones may be delayed and may show up on or around their “corrected” age. For example at 4 – 8 weeks old most babies born full term start to smile and engage with those adults around them. Our babies didn’t start to actively smile until they were around 4 months. When we correct for their “prematurity” we can clearly see that they would be “2 months corrected.” And when we look at the AAP guidelines we see that this would then fit into the “normal” curve.  Basically, for developmental milestones (Social, Cognitive and Motor) it’s important that parents of babies prematurely born correct to their gestational age – this also means that doctors need to correct as well and allow the extra time needed should babies require.

How long do we correct for age?

Most developmental milestones should correct themselves around 24 months, or 2 years of age. This seems to be what the peer-reviewed literature states as well as the AAP. Of course if we’re concerned with a particular milestone then we should always go back to our pediatrician and openly discuss.

So what does all of this mean? Is weight important? Yes. Of course it is. It’s an indicator of nutrition and how well our kids are thriving from a purely growth-perspective. But there is so much more as parents of premature babies to think about. It means that while our preemies may not “look like preemies due to their size” despite them being 10 month old may still act and behave like an 8 month old. It means that your child at 14 months who is speed walking may leave my crawlers in the dust, and this is ok. We’ve accepted this fact. It’s all a part of parenting. But above all what this should tell us and any parents is as follows:

  • All children develop differently
  • Children born premature go by “corrected age”
  • If you are concerned about a particular milestone simply speak to your pediatrician

But please: stop telling us parents of preemies that our “big babies who were once so little and tiny” are no longer premature. They are and will be until they grow out of it, and even still sometimes the scars of being born early are with them forever.

Happy 9 Months!

Dear Phoebe & Xander,

Today is your 9 month birth celebration! Holy cow, yeladim, where has all this time gone?! It literally seems like a blink ago and you were born, tiny, connected to all the wires and we were back in Texas with Aunt Ashly and Uncle Mac. But, alas, we’re in Pennsylvania, it’s cold again (like when we unnamed5came home) and you are officially 9 months old…and, next week we’ll celebrate your first Thanksgiving Holiday together! There will be so much food: mashed potatoes, turkey, stuffing and so many other things…

Phoebe: where to begin with your accomplishments and milestones?! It’s so hard…so much has happened since your last letter. You are now moving all around…literally, everywhere. And your favorite thingunnamed1 to crawl towards? Sasha’s food bowl…You also love when Abba and Daddy say, “Come Here…” you get so excited, smile and make your way to us. It’s so stinking adorable! You giggle so much (most especially at Daddy and Sasha…and the song “Rump Shaker”), you take big-girl baths in the big-kid tub, you cut your first tooth (yesterday!) and one of your newest things you love to do is practice standing up and holding on to objects. You talk, too. A lot. “Ah-bah-bah-bah-bah” is your first phrase and babble…so stinking cute! Keep being inquisitive and contemplative. Watching you study and learn is just the coolest thing ever! Oh, and we celebrated National Pickle Day (ok, not really, we didn’t even know it existed but rest-assured it will be a Bernstein yearly holiday!)

Xander: you had a great eighth month! You’re babbling more and more (oh, and whining 9more and more…lol), and your first official babble phrase was, “mah-mmmmm-mahh—-mahhh.” It happened about 2 weeks back and took us both by surprise! You found your voice! Go Bubba! You are also more and more sturdy on your legs and have taken to sitting and standing and making a game of it. You love your breakfast in the morning – anything apples and cinnamon is your jam! You love to pass objects between your hands, put them in your mouth and just go to town and chew. Lately, you even love to chew on your bibs. We swear you’re IMG_7302cutting another few teeth with the massive amounts of drool you produce. You also are just such a smiley and happy baby it’s so stinking adorable! And, although she wants nothing to do with it when we sit you on the floor and your sister is there you go to hug her…bubba, it’s literally the cutest thing.

In other news, Abba had to take his first business trip away from you both and Daddy since we’ve been home to Pennsylvania. That was not a very easy thing for him – but Daddy made it better. He FaceTimed with Abba during your dinner and evening playtime, and he even sent me pictures of you both in the morning time before daycare. Soon, Daddy will be leaving for a week for business and we’ll do the same for him…!

unnamed7Most recently you’ve both been fighting a really bad viral cold. Phoebe, it hit you hard in your sinuses and Xander it hit you hard in your lungs and chest. It’s been hard to watch you both struggle but you’ve both managed through the worst of it. You gave both Daddy and Abba great snuggles, and, well, watched Moana more than a few times. Ok, way more than a few times…Phoebe – you literally stop everything when you hear it go on the television!

Yeladim: Keep growing. Keep learning. Keep exploring. Keep being inquisitive. Keep talking. Keep playing. Keep smiling. Keep grooving. Keep developing into the amazing tiny humans you are. We love you more than you’ll ever know!

All our Love,

Daddy and Abba

unnamed6

Happy 8 Months!!

Dear Phoebe & Xander,

Today is your 8 month birth celebration! How is it that you’re already 8 months old!? It seems nearly impossible to believe, yet here we are celebrating everything about you both!

Since your last letter you both have really tipped the scales…Xander you are a whopping 22.5 lbs and Phoebe you are 16.75lbs. Though this weight isn’t an “official” weight, Nurse Jane was happy to grab quick informal weights during our visit for your flu vaccines. Official weights coming at your 9 month wellness check.

Phoebe – you have so many new skills! You can sit up, army crawl, babble and stand! You absolutely love to move around and cannot stand being still. You are super inquisitive and love to observe everything you see. You study objects before playing and love to analyze everything – it’s super cute. You’re officially a “Daddy’s Girl,” and love to smile for him whenever you see or hear him…It’s truly precious! You are no longer just eating purees of single foods now as you’ve officially graduated to more complex food combinations with spices, vegetables, fruits and meats. It’s been nothing short of amazing to watch you grow and adapt to eating foods. In fact, you just recently started to love yogurt melts, teething wafers and have even managed some cereal-type puffs…but still no teeth…

Xander – since your last letter the strides you have made are just incredible! You are able to roll in every which direction, you officially sleep only in your crib and you’ve started to babble! In fact, you love screeching and exploring your voice – totally adorable. You’ve also tuned into “stranger danger” and really love your Abba and Daddy, but truth-be-told you’re an “Abba’s Boy.” You love to stand up, sit up and explore your surroundings – oh, and take anything and everything and place it in your mouth. Literally. Everything. Oh – and you have two teeth!! Your ability to manage foods with texture has improved leaps and bounds! You love your solids and most especially look adorable opening your mouth…Last thing: you’ve started to officially give yourself your own bottle!

Yeladim, we love you to the moon and beyond! Each day you show us more of your incredible personalities and we just absolutely love it!

Keep growing. Keep learning. Keep exploring. Keep being the incredible little people you are and always be true to yourself.

All our love,

Daddy & Abba

Happy 7 Months!

Dear Phoebe & Xander,

Today marks your 7-month birth anniversary…you’re 7 months old! Holy moly! The time is literally flying since you’ve been born…and boy has this last month brought about so many incredible changes in you both! It’s been an unbelievable experience to watch…let’s see what’s been going on:

Phoebe: you’ve made some absolutely incredible progress – let’s take a look: you can roll front to back and then back to front. You love to roll. You can spin on your belly 3600 in order to search for the perfect toy. You have begun the process of army crawling – and have made it a few inches forward! With more practice you’ll be moving in more new ways! You’ve pretty much mastered sitting up on your own once placed into position – you still haven’t figured out how to get there yourself. You absolutely love using the exersaucer. You love to touch down and do little squats…not to mention play with the mirror. You have discovered that you can giggle and that you’re ticklish. You think your fur-sister Sasha is just the funniest thing ever! And you love when she kisses your little toesies! You’ve officially given up your evening catnap, so we’re now 3 solid naps a day. And lastly, you really love to eat your solids. Your favorites are sweet potato, pumpkin, plums and apples.

Xander: the strides you’ve made have been pretty remarkable this last month! You’ve started to really discover your babble and vowel sounds! You’re finally telling your story! You can roll front to back AND back to front, now, and you no longer cry when you make it to your tummy! You are finally taking to the spoon and exploring solids…your favorites are bananas, apples, oatmeal and plums. You have two teeth that have officially broken through – wow! You have graduated from sleeping in your mamaroo to officially sleeping in your crib…this is such a great accomplishment! We’re so very proud of you for this! You are able to sit up so much better and sometimes unsupported – and you’re doing it so well. You love it when we sing to you – it instantly brings a smile to your face, and you love to chew on your caterpillar toy. You enjoy time in your exersaucer but really long to be able to stand on your own. You love when we hold your arms up and stand…you shake your tushie and smile so much! And…and…you’re giggling! Hooray! Oh, and you painted at daycare! You painted with your hands and a brush!

Each of you has achieved so many individual accomplishments…it’s unbelievable! But there are also some other mutual noteworthy events that occurred: you are both officially unswaddled for all sleeping! You love your new transitional Love To Dream sleep sack (but Pickle – you gave us a RUN for a money during the transition…girl…). You prefer to just play on the padded mat and no more “tummy time” mat as you both roll too much. And you both are able to sit up in your stroller so no more car seats for them! And you are now the stars of your own blog with Abba called, “Not The Momma!” You love posing for pictures (And Daddy secretly loves to dress you both up!).

Yeladim – you’re growing way too fast and changing way too much; literally, something new every single day. What a gift to watch your growth unfold right in front of our eyes! At times it seems surreal and still somewhat of a dream, but when you whine at 4:15am we know it’s not a dream lol. Albeit you are sleeping somewhat through the night…#almostthere

We love you so much. Keep growing. Keep developing into the amazing humans you’re destined to be!

All Our Love,

Abba and Daddy

The Importance of LGBTQ+ Story Books

As an adult my memory of childhood is pretty good. I remember events so far back it sometimes shocks myself – and with the most vivid of detail. One thing I clearly don’t remember is ever being told a story where anything LGBTQ+ was discussed. I don’t ever remember a story about a boy coming out of the closet, or a family with two moms (or two dads), a character who was transgender. In fact, the first time I read anything about “being gay” was when someone bought me the book called, “The Gay Man’s Health and Wellness Guide” in an effort to help me not contract HIV. Real nice, eh? Not the best read for a 17-year-old coming out of the closet. If literature that included these topics were presented to me would things have been different? You can bet your ass it would!

Early childhood education (ECE) is crucial for children’s development and critical thinking. One aspect of importance is learning about family. After all family is everything, right? There are many types of family compositions: mom/dad, two dads, two moms, single parents, grandparents, adoptive parents, step parents and more I am surely missing. When children are presented with stories that show these families, and theirs, it teaches acceptance, not just tolerance. One thing that binds each of these family units is love – and these children’s stories are about the love of family and of their importance.

Recently, I was tagged in a FaceBook post where 32 (random number) books that feature LGBTQ+ friendly subject matter were listed to be included on Public ECE reading shelves. Of course each educator would have to preview books for age-appropriate content. That goes without saying.

These were books that presented different family composition (i.e. same-sex parents), stories of coming out and most of all that we exist and are a part of everyday life. That’s 32 more books than existed when I was growing up. Oh, and how I longed for a book that showed someone like me.

It was only natural that I engaged the poster and, of course, discussed which of the books I already had in my library. Having these books will be so important for my children. I want them to see their family in a book. There’s something so powerful about that message. And of course they will know other family structures – they will know that their father’s have a mother and father. They will have friends with mothers and fathers, two dads, two moms among many more I’m certain.

However, one comment made mention that they would be upset if these books were read to their kids without them having the opportunity to discuss issues like this at home. They continued to share that they had a right to even have their children sit out from stories such as these, or better yet, just not include books about LGBTQ+ families as they don’t align with their religious beliefs, all while attending a public school. Hold up…Just stop…

While I understand there are families that may not fully understand or accept my family, but that is not my problem. My family is here and my family exists. And there are many, many families just like mine. This is why when children attend a public education system they should be presented with facts, not opinions, and allowed to form their own thoughts as they align, or otherwise, with what they’re taught at home. Books that depict other family units only show that they exist. It’s that simple. It’s actually no different than learning about the many religions of the world, the many cultures of the world and much more. It’s also why there are home, private and religious schools. If a family wants their children taught a certain way then by all means choose the best educational path for them. As a parent I wholeheartedly understand wanting the best for my children.

By not including these books as part of ECE you do a gross disservice to our youth. These books simply allows kids to see their families and for others to see families different from their own. It doesn’t take a parent’s right to instill their own beliefs and morals. It just presents other family structures. And for my part as a parent I am glad that these books exist. It gives me much hope that the world my children will grow into adults may be a bit closer to truly accepting all people.

Happy 6 Months!

Dear Pheobe and Xander,

Today marks your 6 month birth anniversary and our sixth month blessed to be your parents! It’s unreal to think just how fast time has flown. There is saying that states ‘the days are long but the months short.’ It’s so true…so much of the last six months has seemed both fast and slow…but when we see the way you’ve grown, your smiles, the way you have started to giggle and the way you gaze at us it makes it worth every minute.

Pheobe – your official nickname is Pickle. Nearly everyone now calls you this! You have started to respond to your name (Phoebe) and you are just a content and happy baby (except when you’re over-tired, but we’ll omit that part from the letter). You love to play on the mat, roll over, be on your tummy and so much more. But perhaps one of your most favorite things is trying new foods. You get so excited to try “nom noms” and literally jump out of the seat with your mouth wide open! You recently started to have a truly audible giggle and it just melts our hearts…You sleep through the night now, which Abba and Daddy thank you for, but when you wake up at 5am you love to snuggle with Abba on the couch – truly precious moments. However, you have recently made a habit of refusing to nap during the day and letting out huge screams just as we lay you down for bed…sleep regression? Who knows? But we hope this phase is short-lived. 😛

Xander – your official nickname is Bubba. It just seems to fit! You have also started to respond to your name which is just so cool. You are the fussier of the babies when compared to your sister, but we try hard not to compare. You’re generally a very smiley baby, but just like to move at your own pace. You have finally grown to enjoy your tummy time and can really lift and move your super big head! We know it’s hard work – keep it up! You are not so keen on taking food from a spoon, which is fine. You will let us know when you’re ready – but the other day you did enjoy some bananas which made you crack a huge smile! Your favorite thing is to stand up – whenever you’re fussing it’s the first thing we do – and you start to smile like such a big boy! You are also sleeping through the night (when you’re not battling a cold or coxsackie virus) and both Abba and Daddy thank you for that! Now please just coordinate with your sister and both sleep through the same nights??

Yeladim – you both have accomplished so much since you’ve been born! It’s amazing to reflect and witness how you both have changed and continue to grow and change. Abba and Daddy love you both more than you know and now on to the next 6 months which will bring us to your 1 year birth celebration! And yes – we’ve already agreed on a theme 🙂

All our Love,

Daddy and Abba

Happy 5 Months!

Dear Phoebe & Xander,

Tomorrow is your 5 month birth celebration! Daddy and Abba can hardly believe that time has gone by this quickly…so much has happened since your birth and you both have conquered so much. When we reminisce, which we often do, it’s inspiring, really. Fighters since birth!

Phoebe: You have finally made it over the 12 lbs mark, and we speculate you’re likely near 13…you’ve taken a keen interest in reaching across your body in an attempt to roll over. Keep it up, girl, you’re almost there! You absolutely love to play on the gym with your “friends,” animals that light up and sing to you. You squeal and wriggle with excitement each time they sing. It’s entirely too adorable. You also love to tell stories to Abba and Daddy, and we love to hear your explore your voice! It’s just too stinking cute! Oh, and you’ve begun to shuffle on the floor, you’ve eaten multigrain cereal and peaches, begun the teething process and love to practice sitting up. Oh, and how can we forget that you’re a total Daddy’s girl and that you love when he walks you by the frog statue…Pickle, you brighten our days so much! Your smile, your voice and your desire to seek our attention is simply amazing!

Xander: You have nearly skipped 6 month clothes and are now filling 9th month out nicely…you are likely somewhere between 16 – 18 lbs…and boy do Abba and Daddy feel it – boy you is getting heavy! You love to be on your tummy, but most especially propped on the boppy pillow or one of our legs. You are fascinated with standing up and being on your legs! You think it’s just the funniest thing ever! You are just starting to show signs of rolling from your back to your tummy and enjoy reaching for toys and bringing them to your mouth. Which brings me to the next thing: you’re desire to help assist in your bottle feeding. Dude. We love you. And we know you want to help. But you’re not ready. You just push it out of your mouth. Remember, we got you, boo, and will always give you your bottle. We promise :-* You loved your peaches and cereal, love your singing time with Daddy and Abba and you are a total Abba’s boy…it’s stinking adorable. Bubba – you are a beam of light that just ignites the room! Keep smiling. Keep growing! It’s just amazing to watch!

Yeladim – as we celebrate today we also reflect on just how far you’ve come since your birth. You are each nailing your chronological milestones and saying to your prematurity: “Who’s premature!? Not us!” And while each of you develop differently and have different strengths, it’s just inspiring to watch it all unfold in front of our eyes. Each day you seem to learn something new – and sometimes just from the morning to the night! Like if we blink at the wrong time we’ll miss something special. It’s true what everyone’s said: time flies. And even though we’ve only been home a short few months since your release from the NICU it’s just flown on by…

Keep growing. Keep exploring. Keep learning. Keep being the amazing little people you are growing in to be…

All our love,

Daddy and Abba

Happy 4 Months!

Dear Phoebe and Xander,

Um…do you know what today is?! It’s your four month birth celebration! Wow! A third of the way through your first year already – my how time flies…

It was just last week Daddy and Abba were holding you saying to one another, “when and how in the heck did you get so big!” Xander, you smiled at us, and Pickle, you just gave us your RBF. It was rather adorable. But seriously: you’re both huge! Abba was even compelled to write an interim letter just about your weights! Keep growing and getting stronger and stronger.

Yeladim: you both enjoy your play mat. You smile, squirm, march your legs and even coo and squee at all the surrounding toys. Phoebala: just last night you almost turned yourself from your back to your belly reaching for your links! Almost there!  You both are slowly discovering your voices and each other are so stinking adorable. Xanatoot: you are so close to giggling…any day now we feel!

You both are enjoying your smiles. Phoebe you are still reserved with yours, which is fine, but you do love to smile when you wake up…oh, and when you sneezed and peed on Abba you thought that was the funniest ever!

You have also started daycare and are currently battling your first sniffles. You’re handling it like champs. You both especially love to go into the shower and steam. You love the warm water running down your keppies (that’s Yiddish for heads).  You smile and just absolutely love it!

Literally you both bring us so much joy! And we appreciate that you’re sleeping more than six hours a night…some nights even 9 hours! We’re so lucky to be celebrating our first Father’s Day as your parents. We truly are so lucky. We love you. Keep smiling. Keep exploring.  Keep being the true miracles you are to us!

All our love,

Abba and Daddy

Happy 3 Months!!

Dear Phoebe and Xander,

Oh, my! Where has time gone!? Today, May 17th is your 3 month birth celebration!! Holy moly! Happy 3 months, yeladim! To celebrate we’ve made a list of accomplishments you’ve each achieved since your birth. It’s quite impressive:

1. You were born 7 weeks early
2. Your organ systems were asked to perform before they were ready – and they did
3. You’ve learned how to regulated your body temperature
4. You’ve learned how to breathe on your own
5. You’ve learned how to take a bottle, and have graduated from disposable to 4 fl oz and now big boy and big girl 8 fl oz bottles
6. You’ve graduated from preemie to level 1 nipples
7. You’ve learned to poop regularly (well, Xander, sometimes you like to hold it for an extra large treat for Abba and Daddy)
8. You’ve gone from preemie diapers to newborn and then to level 1 diapers
9. You’ve learned to use different cries to let us know what you want and need
10. You’ve learned how to get our attention, even when you don’t really need it
11. You’ve learned each of our voices
12. You’ve learned to roll from your belly to your back
13. You’ve learned to smile
14. You’ve learned to lift your head up and move left and right – you both enjoy tummy time
15. You’ve taken part in your first primary election (ok, you tagged along with Abba, and we all voted which matters)
16. You’ve taken many walks outside
17. You’ve each doubled your birth weight
18. You’ve each grown hair – Phoebe, we swear your hair doubles overnight, every night
19. You’ve graduated from preemie, to newborn to now 0 – 3 month clothes (Xander, you’re the one in 3 month. Phoebe, you’re still in newborn)
20. You’ve learned how to steal our hearts even when we’re both severely sleep deprived

Above all, you’ve done SO much in your short 3 months in this world. And we love you more than you’ll ever know. Keep growing. Keep smiling. Keep getting stronger and bigger and until our next letter at 4 months.

All our Love,

Daddy and Abba

Happy 2 Months!

Dear Phoebe & Xander,

Wow has time flown! You are now 2 months old! That also means you are technically “1 weeks corrected age…” It amazes us each day that you are still here. Truly. Our family is complete – even when you are both wailing as though we’ve never fed you in your life…

Daddy has officially gone back to work, which is sad for Abba. He misses him. And it’s also sad for Daddy as he misses you both throughout the day. Don’t worry, Abba sends him pictures and gives regular updates so that he knows how you’re behaving!

Phoebe – you’ve begun to fill out all of your preemie clothing, and even fit into some newborn-sized outfits! Totally cool! What’s not totally cool? How you’ve learned to cluster-feed. At 1am and 4am. But we got you! You’ve also filled yourself into a newborn-sized diaper and that’s pretty cool! You still have issues with suck/swallow and breath coordination, but going back to a preemie nipple has truly helped you. You’re taking more and more successful bottles (defined as how much she keeps down and no spit up!) and you’re filling out so nicely!

Xander – you’ve blown out of newborn-sized diapers and officially rocking a size 1. You also fit into 0 – 3 month clothing! You love to hold your poop for one or two a day – daddy and abba sure love to clean that mess up! And holy smokes you’re drinking 4oz bottles at a time, now! You’re such a big boy. You have also developed an unusual habit: crying in your sleep. And not little cries. Wailing as though you’ll never see milk again! They’re not quite night-terrors as you’re too young, but it is common among preemies. Never forget that Daddy and Abba are always right there for you. We’re never too far away!

Yeladim – we love you so much. These last two months have been emotionally, physically and mentally challenging, but it’s also the most rewarding job that there ever was. It’s an amazing paradox. We can’t imagine what our lives were like before you both were here…Until your third month birth celebration.

All our love,

Daddy and Abba